Today, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved Likud MK Dr. Anat Berko’s proposal differentiating acts of terrorism from other crimes for which minors under 14-years-old cannot receive prison sentences.
According to the bill, these minors will be kept in a locked children’s home until they turn 14, at which point they will be sent to prison. It is meant to overcome a gap in the current law that forces Israeli courts to send the minors back home, even after they commit acts of terrorism.
This bill was drafted a couple of months ago. The terror attack in Jerusalem’s Pisgat Ze’ev neighborhood last month by Palestinian cousins aged 12 and 13 only enhanced its necessity.
Dr. Berko said: “I plan to accelerate the bill’s passage into law as much as possible because it could save lives. As long as the Palestinians recruit minors while knowing that the Israeli law does not have a real response to minor terrorists under age 14, we can only expect the phenomenon to spread with the thought that anyway Israeli law enforcement officials will send the minors back home after they commit the acts.”